Missiles struck a house in southern Lebanon early on Tuesday and killed seven people, officials said, as Israeli troops backed by tanks battled their way to Hezbollah strongholds.
The strike came as US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice was in Israel to push a blanket plan that would call for a ceasefire simultaneous with the deployment of international and Lebanese troops into southern Lebanon to prevent Hezbollah attacks on Israel.
After her first stop in Beirut yesterday, Hezbollah's de facto negotiator, parliament speaker Nabih Berri, rejected the idea and said a cease-fire should be immediate, leaving the other issues for much later.
Western-backed Prime Minister Fuad Saniora took a similar stance and complained bitterly to Rice about the destruction wreaked by US ally Israel.
Israel "is taking Lebanon backward 50 years and the result will be Lebanon's destruction," he told Rice, the prime minister's office said.
After arriving in Israel, Rice defended the need to ensure Hezbollah is dislodged from the border before any ceasefire is reached.
"Every peace has to be based on enduring principles," she said.
The UN humanitarian chief Jan Egeland has issued an urgent appeal for USD 150 million in aid to Lebanon as the relief effort geared up.
Two ships docked at Beirut and convoys entered from Syria, bearing blankets, food, medicine -- and two convoys of trucks took material to the worst hit areas in the south along dangerous and broken roads.